[ cheek ]
See synonyms for: cheekcheeks on

  1. either side of the face below the eye and above the jaw.

  2. the side wall of the mouth between the upper and lower jaws.

  1. something resembling the side of the human face in form or position, as either of two parts forming corresponding sides of various objects: the cheeks of a vise.

  2. impudence or effrontery: He's got a lot of cheek to say that to me!

  3. Slang. either of the buttocks.

  4. Architecture.

    • one side of an opening, as a reveal.

    • either of two similar faces of a projection, as a buttress or dormer.

  5. Carpentry.

    • a piece of wood removed from the end of a timber in making a tenon.

    • a piece of wood on either side of a mortise.

  6. one side of a hammer head.

  7. Horology. one of two pieces placed on both sides of the suspension spring of a pendulum to control the amplitude of oscillation or to give the arc of the pendulum a cycloidal form.

  8. one of the two main vertical supports forming the frame of a hand printing press.

  9. Machinery. either of the sides of a pulley or block.

  10. Nautical. either of a pair of fore-and-aft members at the lower end of the head of a lower mast, used to support trestletrees which in turn support a top and often the heel of a topmast; one of the hounds of a lower mast.: Compare hound2 (def. 1).

  11. Metallurgy. any part of a flask between the cope and the drag.

Idioms about cheek

  1. cheek by jowl, in close intimacy; side by side: a row of houses cheek by jowl.

  2. (with) tongue in cheek. tongue (def. 37).

Origin of cheek

before 900; Middle English cheke,Old English (a)ce; akin to Dutch kaak,Middle Low German kake

Other words for cheek

Other words from cheek

  • cheekless, adjective

Words Nearby cheek Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use cheek in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for cheek


/ (tʃiːk) /

    • either side of the face, esp that part below the eye

    • either side of the oral cavity; side of the mouth: Related adjectives: buccal, genal, malar

  1. informal impudence; effrontery

  1. (often plural) informal either side of the buttocks

  2. (often plural) a side of a door jamb

  3. nautical one of the two fore-and-aft supports for the trestletrees on a mast of a sailing vessel, forming part of the hounds

  4. one of the jaws of a vice

  5. cheek by jowl close together; intimately linked

  6. turn the other cheek to be submissive and refuse to retaliate even when provoked or treated badly

  7. with one's tongue in one's cheek See tongue (def. 19)

  1. (tr) informal to speak or behave disrespectfully to; act impudently towards

Origin of cheek

Old English ceace; related to Middle Low German kāke, Dutch kaak

Derived forms of cheek

  • cheekless, adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Other Idioms and Phrases with cheek


In addition to the idiom beginning with cheek

  • cheek by jowl

also see:

  • tongue in cheek
  • turn the other cheek

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.